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Wednesday, March 27, 2013


Let me just start off by saying that never have I hated the internet and social media more than I have this month.  It just seems to offer a giant platform for people to say things they have not thought about, make claims about issues they have not researched, and jump on bandwagons that they have no idea what direction are headed in.

People lobbying for and against marriage equality, hurtful and unnecessary words exchanged on both sides.

People slandering the CEO of Starbucks and publicly boycotting the company {in the name of Christianity, no less} posting a fake article as their basis for doing so.

And so much more.

Let me just say this.

I love words.  Words are beautiful.  Words are a gift.

Your words are important.

No one else will ever be able to speak your words, so it is important that you speak them.


It is so incredibly important to think about your words. 

There are so many reason for you to consider your words before you use them, but I think there are two main reasons.

One:  Once your words are out there, you can never take them back. 

This is especially true on social media.  Sure, you can delete your post.  You can say you're sorry, or that you've changed your mind.  But you can never truly take back the words that you spoke, or the words that you posted.  They are out there to stay, and they are attached to your name.

Two:  You never know how your words are going to influence someone.  

You don't know who all looks up to you.  You don't know who will choose to believe your words as truth.  So consider them carefully.

Did you know that it is possible to disagree with someone's views without going crazy and dragging their name through the mud?

Did you know that it is completely okay to have an opinion and not tell everyone about it?

Did you know that it is possible to disagree with others in love, and not hate?

Did you know that just because you disagree with someone's beliefs, you do not have to use your words to berate them in anger?

Your words are important, and they matter.

Your beliefs are important, and they matter.

Both can be conveyed in love. 

Choose your words wisely, friends.  Because they will either bring help or harm, there is no in-between.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Let's talk.

Let's talk about loving Jesus.

Let's talk about being cool and fitting in.

Let's talk about showing others how we love Jesus.

Let's talk.

Here's the deal, friends.  My mom sent me this article this morning.  I love it.  I agree with it.  And unless you read it, this blog may not make a ton of sense to you.

It's okay, I'll wait here while you read.

Got it?  Wonderful.

I posted it on my instagram and received some comments that made me think about it a lot more.

Don't worry, I'm not going to rant about the article {even though I think it is fantastic} or insta-oppinions.

I want to talk about something else.

I think that culturally, we have been trying to change the message of Jesus, whether we realize it or not.

Trying to make it softer, make it cooler, make it more accepting.

Trying to make it fit in more--so it will reach more people, of course.

In doing this, we've gone as far as disengaging ourselves from something as pure as calling ourselves Christians.

We've picked which parts of the Bible will reach people the most, and we've left out the rest.

When the topics of gay marriage, or abortion, or unmarried sex come up, we tend to pretend the Bible doesn't have clear views on those things.

My aunt texted me after reading that article and said this:

"It's not our message to change to our personal beliefs.  
It's His message to share with others.  People forget that."

And I think, that maybe, we have. 

"'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'" {Luke 10:27}
Love God.  Love People.

It's that simple.

Love God.

Love the things He has said.

The words He has left behind for you.

Love People.

Love them enough to tell them those things.

Love them enough to love them with full on Christianity, not with with a watered down version you've created for yourself.

Love them enough to be yourself around them, not a watered down version of yourself tailored to them and their feelings.

I believe in Jesus.  I call myself a Christian.

Does that mean that I agree and am linking myself to all the crazy people who have done horrible things in the name of Christianity?


Does that mean I'm saying that I am affiliated with the ignorant people who want to burn the Koran and blame it on their Christianity?


I mean, let's just put this into perspective.  I'm a female.  In the history of humanity, there have been some crazy females who have done horrific things, like murder their families.

So should I not call myself a female, because I don't want to be affiliated with them in any way?

Yeah, that'll do the trick.

I mean, really.  Come on guys.  If you follow Christ, YOU follow Christ.  It doesn't mean you follow every other individual who claims to follow Christ.  It means that YOU follow Christ.

I am by no means perfect.

I do not even come close to measuring up to the standards set for us in the Bible.

But that's why Jesus came for me, and that is why I happily claim His name.

When I say I am a Christian, I mean that I am a follower of Christ, and I will not apologize for that.

Nor will I try to make it something that it's not.

Yes, there are some churches out there with some seriously skewed beliefs.  I grew up in church and am fully aware of the backwardness and hypocrisy in some churches.

But let's not forget, Jesus calls the church His bride.

{So going to church is nothing to apologize for.}

A bride that He loved enough to die for.

Do not dishonor that by being ashamed of His name.

Do you know how you can make up for the ugliness of some churches?

By doing what Jesus has called us to do.  Love people with His love.  Share HIS message with them, not yours.

Love God.

Love People.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

An unpopular opinion.

My friend texted me this morning with a question.

Should you throw a baby shower for an unmarried woman?

I gave her my opinion, one that I know I’m pretty alone in.

Yes, I think you should.  Because that’s the woman who needs support and love and gifts, because she’s going to be doing this alone.  And regardless of the circumstances, children are a gift from God, and don’t deserve to have a lesser life because of something their parents did wrong.

Then came the kicker.

What if it’s a married man’s baby?  He told her he wasn’t married, but he is, and it’s his baby.


I thought about it, and told her my answer was still the same. 

No, I don’t think you should stand up in front of church and say “hooray, we’re going to celebrate this!”  But that doesn’t mean you abandon her and throw her out on her own. 

Her response hurt my heart.

Try telling my church that.

Jesus came for the sick, you guys.
He came for the sinners.
He came for the broken.

And let’s be honest here:  if this woman had been having sex with a man that she wasn’t married to, realized it was wrong and was sorry, no one would have any problem.  She would be accepted and loved on, and even glorified for her testimony.  But because that resulted in a pregnancy, she’s an outcast.  A sinner.  Unredeemable.  When really, she did the same thing, merely the result was different.

Why is that?  Because sometimes, some of us get churchy.
And we put our churchy pants on.
And we don’t care about the sin.
We care about the appearance.

This isn’t about a baby shower. 
I hope that women of God will rally around this woman and her child and encourage her.
I hope they will pray for her and offer her friendship and assistance.
But this is about more than that.

This is about the fact that we seem to have forgotten that Jesus came for the sick.
We’re more comfortable sitting in church and organizing events and taking missions trips than we are with getting involved with people who are living messed up lives.

It’s easier to go to another country where people have never heard about Jesus and love on them than it is to reach out to people who have heard about Jesus and are living opposite of that.  It’s harder to love on them.

It's harder to love on the promiscuous girl. 
It's harder to love on the gay guy. 
It's harder to love on the intelligent atheist. 
It's harder to love on the one who knows about Jesus, but chooses to live a lifestyle of partying and destruction instead. 

It's easier to politely forget about them. 
To turn our head and cary on with our church business and just leave them alone. 

Sin is messy.
It is ugly.
It is not pristine and clean.
That’s why Jesus had to come.

And, hello, if you’re confused about how to reach out to people living in sin, take a look at Jesus’ life and how He lived it.

After all, we’re supposed to be following that example, are we not?

Or have we sacrificed that too, for the sake of a pristine appearance?

When was the last time you befriended someone living in sin?
And just rolled up your sleeves and wallowed through the mud with them?
When did you last grab on to them and promise to not let go, no matter what?
No matter how messy it got
No matter what other people thought
No matter how it made you look
No matter how frustrating it got
Until you had shown them the unconditional love of Jesus that was so graciously given to you?

That, my friends, is what it’s all about.  

Friday, March 8, 2013

friday favorites and no spring break.

You guys.  I just realized that this will be my first year without a spring break.
Can we just talk about this?
First, that's depressing and makes me miss college.
Second, I vote that spring break should be extended into your post-college years.  You know, to help break the ice of the real world and all of that.
Right?  Right.

Okay, now that we've got that out of the way, here are my favorite things this week!

This blog that Meg wrote about grace and dancing is fantastic.


  • My dad was a guest speaker at the dream center church in LA, and I got to watch him live last night.  {because, you know, being newly married means you don't get to go on fun trips with your parents.  booo.}  With a three hour time difference and being on opposite ends of the country, it was seriously cool to watch him speak in real time. In the words of my bff Kip, I love technology.  
  • My wedding pictures came.  Enough said. 
{it's our thing.  do not judge.}

other things. 

this. is. amazing. 
I am a coffee addict.  I pretend to be nothing else.  The problem with guzzling down two (three?) cups of coffee every morning is guzzling down that much creamer.  And sugar.  And whatever other crap is probably in there.  I'm trying to be more health-conscious in my choices {Although I may or may not have eaten taco bell for dinner this week. Trying, people.} 
In comes coconut milk creamer!  I am obsessed with all things coconut.  But even if you're not, you're in luck, because this tastes nothing like coconut.  It's flavored coconut milk, which somehow magically transforms into delicious and good for you {better for you?} creamer.  

and I leave you with my favorite funny things this week....

that is all. 

hoooooray for Friday!  Have a fantastic weekend!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


We all have dreams, right?
Things we want to accomplish.
Ways we want to impact the world.
There's something I've noticed lately, especially with myself.
We don't really talk about our dreams.
There are plenty of reasons for this, of course.
We aren't sure if they'll ever actually come true.
We get caught up in the monotony of life.
Or the business of life.
Or, for me--fear.
I don't talk about my dreams because I'm afraid of failing.
Or of what people will think.
Or that I'll fail, and what people will think about me failing.

Do you know that some form of the phrase "do not be afraid" appears 365 times in the Bible?  I've seen things about this several times this week--through pinterest, other blogs, and twitter.  It seems to be blowing up right in front of my face.
And you know, it has really made me think.

God did not give us dreams so we could be afraid of them.
And God sure enough did not give us dreams so we would ignore them out of fear.
This has really challenged me this week, and truly given me a new perspective.

"I want to be a writer."
Sure, that's easy enough to say in conversation.
But when people ask questions beyond that, like "what do you want to write?" or, "what are you working on now?" I tend to change the subject.
Because what if I tell them, and then I fail at it?
Today, I have decided that I am done thinking that way.

I want to be a writer.
I am currently writing a book.
There are thirty-nine days until my twenty-first birthday, and my goal is to have a completed {unedited, but completed} manuscript ready by my birthday.
That is my goal.
That is my dream.
Sure, there's a chance that I could fail at that.  But that is certainly NO reason not to try.

It feels really freaking good to write that down.
What's your dream?
You should write it down.
You should tell be.
You should not be afraid. 

"For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."
-2 Timothy 1:7

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

wedding pictures!

They're here, they're here, they're here!! I cannot even contain my excitement.  Getting to look at all of these little moments just makes me remember how fun and perfect that day really was.

Until I can put them all up, here are a few of my favorites.

{And when I say a few, I mean like thirty.  Don't judge me, people.}

this was on my wedding bucket list.  clearly the barista didn't understand this was for a picture, so we fixed {?} it with eyeliner. 

if you know me and my mom at all, then you understand the significance of this picture.  and if not, you can just think that I'm a super weird person for wanting this picture. 

the photographer said, "have you ever seen the movie Bridesmaids?"

which immediately turned into this. 

sneaking up on my dad.

funny story: the limo driver forgot to pick us up, and just drove on to the reception..without us.  So we were the last two people left at the church.  BUT, we got some really great pictures out of it!

this was right after Chris' best man told the whole reception about that one time I kissed Chris in his back seat, like three years ago. 

there are five hundred of these babies, so just prepare yourself.  

have a beautiful tuesday!